L.E.D.s (light emitting diodes)
LEDs are made from semiconductor ?chips,? the size of sand grains, covered with arrays of pencil-eraser size plastic bulbs. Increasingly being used in traffic signals, automotive lighting, and exit signs, LEDs have the potential to use far less electricity and last much longer than conventional fluorescent and incandescent bulbs. Until now, all lighting systems, especially incandescent bulbs, generated more heat than light. But our 99-percent efficient reflectors for LEDs makes them the first candidate for light-bulb replacement that generates more light than heat. LEDs could be used to light homes, businesses, museums, airports and streets. Lighting accounts for 25 percent of electrical energy consumption. Since white LEDs emit more light per dollar and generate less unwanted heat, they are potentially a major energy saver. A shift from bulbs to L.E.D.'s and other more efficient kinds of lighting could cut that percentage in half, easing the strain on power systems and reducing the chances of a blackout like the one that affected the northeastern United States and Canada in August 2003. Our current system of light is tremendously inefficient; incandescent bulbs waste 95 percent of the energy flowing through them as heat. Fluorescent bulbs are more efficient, but their harsh color has prevented them from fully penetrating the lighting market. LEDs are long-lasting, extremely rugged - with a typical lifespan of over 100,000 hours of use. LEDs are extremely more efficient than either incandescent or fluorescent bulbs, and their long life and hardiness make them ideal for out-of-the-way spots. They are also easy to pair with small renewable power-providers such as solar cells. Truly, this is a light for the Twenty-First Century.